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Biodynamic Farming | Growth Cycles | Vineyard Layout

Biodynamic® Farming     back to top

We're Demeter certified biodynamic® in our growing practices, and Stellar certified organic, meaning we understand the intricate connection between growing premium grapes and making great wines. That is why we are committed to meticulous vineyard management practices, including biodynamic® farming methods.

Biodynamic® farming began in the early 1920's. A group of practicing farmers, concerned with the decline of the soil, sought the advice of Dr. Rudolf Steiner, who had spent all his life researching and investigating the forces that regulate life and growth. From a series of lectures and conversations held in June 1924, emerged the fundamental principles of biodynamic® farming, a unified approach to agriculture that relates the ecology of the earth-organism to that of the entire cosmos. This approach has been under development in many parts of the world ever since.

Dr. Rudolf Steiner

Biodynamic® farming focuses on the entire farm as one living organism. According to pioneers of biodynamic® farming, the maintenance and development of the microbial life of the soil is a basic necessity if it is to be preserved for our future generations. We see our vineyard as an individual organism that will eventually showcase its own identity through the fruit it develops. Biodynamic® farming combines the knowledge of premium viticultural practices with an understanding on how to treat the vineyard and its surrounding areas in order to achieve desired long-term farming results.

Growth Cycle     back to top

At Johan Vineyards, we carefully manage the vines at each step of the growth cycle. Summarized below is the yearly cycle of our vineyards and some of the methods and applications we use to insure healthy vine growth.



November – March:

Vineyard practice: Pruning


April – May:

Vineyard practice: Frost Protection


May - June:

Shoot growth
Vineyard practice: shoot thinning and sucker removal canopy management


Early June:

Vineyard practice: leaf sampling for nutrient assessment of the vine


Late June:

Fruit set
Vineyard practice: leaf removal around fruit, canopy management


July – August:

Lag phase
When the vine shifts from a vegetative stage to a fruiting stage noted by seed hardening and slow growth to the shoot tips.

Vineyard practice: hedging shoot tip removal (giving the vines a “hair cut”)



When the grapes start to soften and change color.

Vineyard practice: crop thinning to adjust crop levels to ensure balanced vines


September – October:

Vineyard practice: pick grapes



Post Harvest fertilization
Vineyard practice: apply compost



Vineyard Layout     back to top

Our vineyards are broken into 12 blocks that feature a mixture of varietals, clones, root stocks, slope, and soil types. This combination allows us more flexibility and choice of fruit with which to make our wines and provide fruit to our winery partners.


To learn more about our blocks, feel free to explore our Interactive Vineyard Layout.



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